Leisure and the Opportunity Cost of Travel Time in Recreation Demand Analysis: A Re-Examination
Using count data models that account for zero-truncation, overdispersion, and endogenous stratification, this paper estimates the value of access to recreational parks. The focus is on the valuation of the opportunity cost of travel time within the cost of the trip and its effects on estimated consumer surplus. The fraction of hourly earnings that corresponds to the opportunity cost of travel time is endogenously estimated as a function of visitor characteristics, rather than fixed exogenously. We find that the relevant opportunity cost of time for most visitors represents a smaller fraction of their wage rate than commonly assumed previously.
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